Bluebonnets To Peaches

Banks Have It All Wrong
March 25, 2011, 5:16 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I realize it’s been awhile A REALLY LONG TIME since I’ve posted on the blog and I have no excuses except that we’ve been busy living life 🙂

Here’s a post about my experience today in dealing with 2 different national banks, the frustration of them and how they have it completely backwards.

One of my nieces is getting married this summer on the beach in North Carolina. We are renting a house for the weekend of the wedding. I needed to send in the rental agreement on the house and a deposit. The owner requested a cashier’s check. No big deal . . . so I thought!

Our primary checking account is out-of-state; however, we have our “emergency fund” (3-6 months of our living expenses as recommended by Dave Ramsey) at a large national bank with a branch down the street from our home. Although this beach rental doesn’t qualify as an “emergency” our thought was to go in and get a cashier’s check and then reimburse the funds from our primary account.

I quickly found out that they wanted to charge me $8 for a cashier’s check. WHAT? WHY? There is plenty of money in the account to cover the small deposit and the balance does not fluctuate much since we use the account as our emergency fund. When I refused to pay the $8 fee, the banker informed me that we could “upgrade” the account and then I could receive the cashier’s check for free.

I realize that there are different advantages to different types of accounts and I don’t disagree with that; however, I don’t want to “upgrade” my account.  I know that the upgraded account requires you to keep a minimum balance – something I don’t want to think about.  If we had a true emergency then I want access to our funds without worrying about a minimum balance or being hit with enormous fees because I didn’t remember about the minimum balance agreement.   All I wanted was a low dollar cashier’s check – I didn’t want to spend the next hour sitting with the banker analyzing my account and “upgrading” it.

I left that bank and went across the street to another large national bank. This is a bank that we used previously as our primary bank years ago and never actually closed our account – don’t ask me why! It has a very small balance, but enough to cover the cashier’s check I needed.

I went in and asked if I could get a cashier’s check and if there would be a charge. The banker pulled up our account and told me that yes, they do charge for a cashier’s check; however, because we have our mortgage with them also then they would waive the fee. REALLY?

Does anybody else see the irony of this? The bank that holds 3-6 months of our living expenses wanted to charge me a fee; however the bank that we are in debt to for our home is willing to waive the fee!

This infuriates me on several different levels – they have it completely backwards! The bank that holds our money should be willing to issue the cashier’s check for free, not the bank that holds our debt!


Garage Sale Find – Sewing Supplies
August 25, 2010, 6:00 am
Filed under: Curtains/Sewing Projects, Frugal Deals/Ideas

A few weeks ago Hotrod and I headed out to do some garage sale shopping.  We hit a small sewing supply jackpot!

We came across a garage sale of someone that makes theater type costumes and he was selling a bunch of supplies!  I quickly spotted this box with 10 lbs of piping in it!

For all you non-sewers, this piping is used by covering it with your fabric and then attaching it to your curtain (or whatever else you might be making).  It gives a very nice custom finish and is extremely helpful when you can’t find cording or fringe to match your fabric.

This is over 1,000 yards of piping and would cost over $200 at a retail store.  I got the whole box for $8! Yea!  I also picked up buttons and a zipper for .25 each.

Homework Carrels
August 23, 2010, 6:00 am
Filed under: Craft Ideas

This year Hotrod started kindergarten! With one in kinder and one in 3rd grade I knew we would have 2 boys with homework this year. I like the boys to do their homework at the kitchen table so that I am nearby to answer any questions and to make sure they stay on task.

This worked great in previous years when we only one had child with homework. This year I knew I would need to find a way to separate the boys while at the same time keeping myself nearby for any help that may be needed.

I remembered seeing this in Family Fun magazine last year and I decided it was the perfect solution for us!  Not only would it create separate study areas for our boys, it would also keep any needed supplies in close reach.

I had a large display board in the basement from a previous project that I cut in half to make 2 carrels.  The display board had some previous papers glued to it and when I peeled the paper off it tore the display board a bit.  I fixed this by covering the board in white contact paper – good as new!

First I attached a metal ruler to the top of the center section of the board using velcro.  The ruler can now do double duty by holding a stapler, scissors and a pencil sharpener.  Next I attached a hook that holds a zipper pouch to hold glue, markers etc.  Using velcro again I attached a pencil holder to the center section also.

On the left side I attached 2 paper clips to hold any study guides and the right side holds a cork board with push pins.

Now that we are into our 3rd week of school, I can say that these have been a huge success!

$10 deal on Bunkbeds!
August 20, 2010, 6:00 am
Filed under: Frugal Deals/Ideas

Our guest room has consisted of a full size mattress and box springs sitting on the floor.  Our guests have never complained, but I thought a nicer set would be good – you know something that didn’t sit directly on the floor.

I asked hubby to keep an eye out at the auction house for a good bedroom set for our guest room.  Months and months had gone by with nothing coming up for sell.

Hubby finally came across a set of bunk beds.  We knew Hotrod would be thrilled with bunk beds in his room so we moved his twin size bed (with a trundle) to our guest room and put the bunk beds in his room!

Hotrod is happy with his bunk beds, Mommy is happy to have a “real” bed for our guests and the best part of the whole deal was that hubby scored the bunk beds for $10!  That’s a deal you can’t beat!

More Fun Bags
July 12, 2010, 6:00 pm
Filed under: Curtains/Sewing Projects

I had a request for another diaper bag, but instead of the onesie on the front she requested a pocket.  I LOVE the way this bag turned out.  Perfect for a new MOM, but doesn’t scream “diaper bag.”

I also did this one up for a baby boy:

A Fun Diaper Bag!
July 10, 2010, 6:00 pm
Filed under: Curtains/Sewing Projects

Here is my latest project, a fun diaper bag!  There have been quite a few new babies around here and what new Mom doesn’t want a fun diaper bag?

I’ve made several of these bags and I’m selling them so quickly that I haven’t been able to stock my etsy store with any yet!  That’s a good problem to have 🙂

Here’s the back of the bag:

Here’s a peak inside the bag (It has 8 pockets in different sizes, because every Mom knows you can never have too many pockets!):

Kitchen Curtains
March 25, 2010, 3:49 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

A lady that lives nearby posted on our neighborhood facebook page stating that she was looking for someone to make some kitchen curtains and asked for referrals from anybody in the neighborhood.  I very rarely visit our neighborhood facebook page; however, hubby checks it out often!  He responded to her inquiry and much to my delight she contacted me!

She wanted something for the kitchen sink window and backdoor window.  She had seen several designs at Pate-Meadows designs that she liked and told me “pick whichever one you like!”  I just love that!

Here are the before pictures:

Here are the after pictures:

Even though I commonly see the transformation of a room when new curtains are hung, it still never ceases to amaze me on how much they change the look of a room!  Of course, the new paint is lovely too and coordinates beautifully with the fabric!